Carter Praises Minot Airmen’s Service, Dedication
By Air Force Tech. Sgt. Thomas L. Dow
5th Bomb Wing
MINOT AIR FORCE BASE, N.D., Nov. 3, 2012 Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter received a briefing about ballistic missile readiness capabilities and met with airmen during his visit here yesterday.
Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter speaks to airmen at Minot Air Force Base, N.D., Nov. 2, 2012. Carter thanked the service members for their hard work and dedication. DOD photo by Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo
(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.
Carter received briefings on the B-52 bomber and intercontinental ballistic missile readiness capabilities. Leadership from the 5th Bomb Wing and the 91st Missile Wing showcased the effectiveness of the dual-wing mission here.
Following the joint mission briefings, Carter was taken to the weapons storage area for a tour of the facilities. During the tour, he discussed the importance of ensuring that the nation’s nuclear capabilities are safe, secure and effective.
The deputy defense secretary next visited the 91st Missile Wing's missile training facilities. These included a training launch facility, a payload transporter and a missile procedures trainer where missile crews demonstrated procedures that they use in the field on a daily basis.
Carter was then taken to a hangar for a tour of a B-52H Stratofortress. He was given a briefing on the strategic deterrence capabilities of the bomber and shown the multiple weapons the aircraft can employ for combat operations.
After the visit to hangar, Carter talked with more than 200 airmen to thank them for their service and let them know the importance of their mission.
Speaking to the airmen in attendance, Carter said, "I've spent the day learning what you do, appreciating what you do and being amazed at what you do here. The first thing I want to say is thank you."
"When you wake up in the morning and you go to bed at night, you know that you are part of something bigger than yourself," he added.
During his discussion with the airmen, Carter stressed how Minot's role is paramount to America's security.
"What you do here, particularly the nuclear mission, is the bedrock of our security. It is what stands in the background and looms over every action this country takes on the world stage," Carter said. "It is the foundation for everything we do."
Following his speech, Carter presented coins to the airmen to show his appreciation for the hard work and dedication to the mission they show on a daily basis.
"I want you to go home and tell your loved ones that you were thanked by your country for what you do," Carter told the airmen.